College Men

Men's preview: No. 2 California

California's Max Homa reacts to winning his match of Alabama's Justin Thomas during semifinals of Match Play at the 2012 NCAA Championship. California failed to advance to the finals.
California's Max Homa reacts to winning his match of Alabama's Justin Thomas during semifinals of Match Play at the 2012 NCAA Championship. California failed to advance to the finals. ( Tracy Wilcox )

Thursday, September 6, 2012

2. California

2011-12 Golfweek/Sagarin rank: 6

Go-to guy: Max Homa

Season outlook: The deep and talented Golden Bears, winners of last year’s Pac-12 Championship and NCAA West Regional, return five starters, including three All-Americans. And the Bears will add U.S. Amateur runner-up Michael Weaver, who’s returning from a redshirt season. This may be coach Steve Desimone’s best-ever team. Homa, Weaver and Brandon Hagy all are in their fourth season of college golf (Homa is a senior, while Weaver and Hagy are redshirt juniors).

The Bears exhibited that depth at the U.S. Amateur, where four Bears made match play, three advanced to the second round and two – Weaver and Hagy – made it to the semifinals.

The Bears also add five freshmen, including Walker Huddy, who finished T-68 at the U.S. Amateur, and James Yoon, an AJGA All-American.